Posted tagged ‘Grover Cleveland Alexander’

The Heart of the Hall


Some topics are too fun to ignore.  Recently a number of my favorite baseball bloggers have been putting up their lists of the top 50 players who are already in the Hall of Fame.  As a baseball fan, naturally, I have a lot of thoughts on the topic.  I’ll use Verdun’s set up to list out my guys.  Tell me what you think.

1B: Jimmie Foxx, Lou Gehrig

2B: Eddie Collins, Charlie Gehringer, Rogers Hornsby, Napoleon LaJoie, Joe Morgan, Jackie Robinson

SS: Cal Ripken, Arky Vaughan, Honus Wagner, Robin Yount

3B: Wade Boggs, George Brett, Eddie Mathews, Mike Schmidt

LF: Rickey Henderson, Stan Musial, Ted Williams, Carl Yaztrzemski

CF: Ty Cobb, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, Duke Snider, Tris Speaker

RF: Hank Aaron, Roberto Clemente, Al Kaline, Mel Ott, Frank Robinson, Babe Ruth

C: Johnny Bench, Yogi Berra

P: Grover Cleveland Alexander, Bob Feller, Lefty Grove,  Christy Mathewson, Phil Niekro, Nolan Ryan, Tom Seaver, Warren Spahn, Walter Johnson, Cy Young

Negro Leaguers: Oscar Charleston, Martin DiHigo, Josh Gibson, John Henry Lloyd, Satchel Paige

It is a range of players, basically ignoring the 19th century.  There is certainly an argument against doing it that way, but I find it simpler to focus on the 20th century and beyond.  Cy Young is so good that I like on this list anyway.  I figured 10 pitchers would be fair representation along with 5 representatives of the Negro Leagues.  My next player off was Paul Molitor, and my next pitcher was Bob Gibson.  A final thought:  it is rough being a catcher.


Tiger’s Comrades


Apparently, Tiger Woods and his wife, Elin Nordegren, have gotten divorced.  As we all well know, this came about as result of Woods serial affairs and wild living.  In turn, we also know that these facts prove that Tiger Woods is the worst person ever to have walked the face of the planet.  I read a recent post by Joe Posnanski that helped put the Woods story in a bit of context, comparing him to golfer Hal Sutton. This post emphasizes just how quintessentially contemporary the Woods story is. In a world before the internet, text messages, and a 24-hour news cycle, the Woods story is not the story that we all know today.

Now, I am a baseball fan, and I think that this story, like all others, is best understood in the context of baseball. Along with being a baseball fan, I have a strong streak of pessimism. I think it is important for all pessimists to be pessimists not only about today, but about the past as well. In honor of Tiger Woods, let me present an all-time team that would never leave the gossip pages if they played today:

C – King Kelly
1B – Jimmie Foxx
2B – Pete Rose
SS – Arky Vaughan
3B – Wade Boggs
RF – Babe Ruth
CF – Mickey Mantle
LF – Hack Wilson
RHP – Grover Cleveland Alexander
LHP – Rube Waddell

This is a lineup heavy on alcoholism, with a nice mix of womanizing to give us some diversity, and the only non Hall of Famer is prevented from receiving votes. The Tiger Woods story is nothing new; sadly, it has been with us always.